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Healthy Balance

5 Ways to Keep Kids Active This Summer

mom and dad keep their kids active with a tug-of-war game outside

The COVID-19 pandemic has put a wrench in many family summer plans. Camps and the local pool might be closed. You may be limiting the number of people your kids can hang around with, so pick-up or organized sports are out. And that family vacation you were waiting all year for? That may not go off as planned either.

With so many changes to daily life, it can be difficult to keep everyone active and happy – especially kids. As a parent, it’s important to not only keep kids entertained but to find ways to encourage physical activity so they stay healthy and strong.

Get Your Kids Moving

Here are 5 ideas if you’ve run out of ways to keep kids active and get them engaged.

1. Schedule a Family Olympics

There’s nothing like a little competition to get everyone up and moving! Involve the whole family in coming up with challenges everyone can compete in. From tug-of-war to relay races, you can spend hours working up a sweat and having some fun.

2. Create an Obstacle Course

Find interesting ways to make moving a challenge. Set up a course using household objects or toys to create obstacles. You can vary the difficulty level to match your child’s age or ability. Even parents can get in on the action!

3. Plan an Expedition

Just because you need to follow social distancing doesn’t mean you can’t leave your house. So find new places to explore as a family by foot or bike, whether it’s your local park or a new part of town.

Putting off a Pediatrician Visit?

UVA Children's is seeing patients in-person and virtually, including virtual urgent care.

4. Go Back to Basics 

Remember that feeling you had as a kid when your kite took flight and followed you as you ran for what seemed like miles? Share that carefree feeling with your kids and show them what good ol’ fashion fun feels like.

5. Get Crafty

Combine physical activity with art. Use sidewalk chalk to create games that can be played on your driveway, like hopscotch. Have kids paint rocks and leave them along a park trail for unsuspecting passers-by. Decorate flower pots and do some gardening.

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